Even if they don't fast, they can still observe the holiday...
Muslim children are not required to fast for Ramadan until they reach the age of
maturity (puberty). Also It is recommended that adolescents who have reached
puberty (about 12 -13 years of age) to take part in Ramadan traditions like
prayer and fasting. But what about kids who are younger? How can they celebrate
and learn more about Ramadan without fasting? In many families, younger children
enjoy participating and are encouraged to practice their fasting. It is common
for a younger child to fast for part of a day, or for one day on the weekend.
This way, they enjoy the "grown-up" feeling that they are participating in the
special events of the family and community.
To include young children in Ramadan routine without requiring them to fast you
can come up with multiple activities to do with them every day. Here are some
ideas that you might find helpful in sharing this special time with your young
There is nothing lovely more than reading with kids. During Ramadan read books
to help them in their understanding of the holiday and of the Islamic religion.
Arts and Crafts
Another activity that the children take a lot of pride and enjoyment in is
coloring. Young children enjoying being creative and take a lot of pride in
coloring pictures that Mom and Dad can hang on the refrigerator or on the wall
at the office. You can color with them and share in the fun.
Arts and crafts are a fun way for you and your child to spend time together
learning about Ramadan. There are many different projects children can create
with basic items such as construction paper, crayons, and glue.
Moon and Star Gazing
The moon and stars are an integral part of Ramadan. A great way to bond with
your children is to go into your backyard or local park and introduce your
children to the stars. Stargazing is a great way to truly witness amazement in
your kids eyes. Depending on your location something and quiet and as serene as
laying under the stars with your children will create memories that will last
Cook with Your Kids
Spending time in the kitchen cooking with children while getting ready to feast
in the evening is a wonderful experience. They will feel a sense of
accomplishment when they see what a delicious feast they have helped to prepare
to break the day's fast.
It is also common for children to participate in Ramadan in other ways, aside
from the daily fast. They may collect coins or money to donate to the needy, or
read Qur’an with the family in the evening.
At the end of Ramadan, children are often indulged with gifts of sweets and
money on the day of Eid al-Fitr.
These are just a few ways spending time with children during this wonderful time
of year - any way to include them during Ramadan will help further enlighten
them to this glorious holiday.